Leah and Chris from eCommerceChris kindly shared this in-depth training they have on a number of different Seller Performance issues you must be thinking about right now. With Amazon most people make the brutal mistake of ignoring potential threats to their selling account then suffering the consequences down the line. Here are some of my notes from the session:
- Aim to have an Amazon email that is just used for Amazon, don’t use your personal mail or normal business mail. This reduces security risks with your selling account.
- Opt-out of commingled inventory, you don’t want your inventory mixing with others. This applies if you have distributors or other sellers of your product range.
- Opt-out of returnable inventory, you’re relying on Amazon’s FC worker to determine in a few seconds if the product is ok to be sent back out again. This way it’s all sent back to you and never goes back out to an Amazon customer.
- Get brand registry. Best way to protect your account and listings. Start the trademark process very early to ensure it’s ticked off sooner rather than later.
Counterfeit or Inauthentic Complaints:
- NEVER ignore a message containing this. Amazon uses “catch-all” terms like this. Basically means a customer received your item but it “wasn’t what they expected”
- It could be defective, damaged in transit, broken, etc. Understand there is a lot of press around fake products on Amazon, therefore, a customer may think that’s obviously what’s happened.
- “Used sold as new” – don’t just say that’s not possible, you’ve got to dig and find why customers might be thinking your product is DIFFERENT to what was described.
- Asking yourself, why would they think the product is “inauthentic”. Is it a packaging, storing, listing problem? What is the problem? Documentation is your proof it’s not counterfeit/inauthentic, but, actions on your listing to prevent a customer feeling this again should also be in your response to seller performance.
Account Health Dashboard:
- Can be incorrect, better to review performance notifications to see what is being flagged there
- Reviewing your returns.
- Reviewing your feedback.
- Essentially you’re digging to find where problems lie or could crop up if not addressed.
How to Fix?
4 areas to consider: products, documentation, product listings, operations
Products; they’re looking for spikes of negative data or consistent negative data. You need to identify those consistencies and what you’re doing to rectify them. What are the steps, how will you monitor, what is the back-up if that process/automation fails?
Reviewing your sourcing, are they reliable and do you have consistent quality? Are you thinking about possible safety concerns? what quality control measures do you have in place?
Documentation; are you storing all your invoices? Ensure you’re able to invoice yourself, so create a separate entity if you are the manufacturer as well. You can’t backdate this by creating a basic Excel and backdate it.
Listings; are they listed correctly and in-line with TOS? Are they accurately listed with clear information of what it is? Is your packaging up to date?
Operations; how do you store products? Are they checked before they go out to Amazon? Will the packaging survive multiple journeys? Get a sample from supplier that is going to FBA. If you have automation in place, are you checking those? Do you have SOP’s and KPI’s for staff?
Red Flags; policy warnings, blocked listings, safety complaints, inauthentic complaints, poor metrics.